I know this question has been asked before but it was years ago and I would like to get some current information.

I'm in California as a tourist with the Visa Waiver Program. My 90 days expire on June 22nd. From what I understand, if I visit Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean during my 90 days, these are considered adjacent territories and my time there counts towards the 90 days of the Visa Waiver. So, upon re-entry into the US, I will still have to leave during my original 90 days.

Now, if I go to Mexico on the 22nd, when my Visa Waiver expires, and try to re-enter on the 23rd, that's what they consider a ''visa run'' and, while technically possible to get a new 90 days, it's up to the Border Officer and whether he believes I am not trying to game the system.

I would like to do this so I can stay two weeks more with some friends, and I could show the Border Officer my outbound flight to Spain for July 5th, which is two weeks after entering.

Does anybody here have any recent experience on this matter? Do I really stand a chance or, having left on my last day of the visa and re-entering within 24h, is it too much to ask for? Any suggestions as to what I can do?


1 Answer 1


By the letter of the rules, I don't think you stand any chance. You have been in the US for 90 days already, and exiting to Mexico does not reset the clock, so you will be trying to re-enter on the 91st day, which is clearly against the rules and the very definition of a visa run.

Now, you do have an onward flight, so if the CBP officer is feeling generous he might let you in anyway. But this sounds unlikely and really risky, and if he says "no", you're going to have a big immediate problem -- how will you get into the US for your flight? -- and a long-term problem as well, since if you're denied entry for any reason, you will now have to apply for visas every time you want to visit the US.

I can see two alternatives:

  1. Go to Mexico and apply for a B1/B2 tourist visa, or even a transit visa. Since you have a flight to catch, you're reasonably likely to be granted this. It's a lot of hassle though.
  2. Fly to a non-adjacent country (Costa Rica etc) to reset your clock, spend a decent amount of time there (a week or more , then fly back to the US and enter via VWP.

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